The University of Oulu and the University of Lapland from Finland, Luleå University of Technology from Sweden and UIT The Arctic University of Norway announced a joint Arctic agenda during the Arctic Europe Forum held in Oulu, Finland, on September 8, 2016.
The world is showing growing interest in the Arctic and its resources. By establishing a joint Arctic Agenda the four Northern Scandinavian universities will find synergies and further strengthen their research, education and outreach related to Arctic interests. Each of the universities have unique strengths and areas of expertise that they will bring to the table for providing unique opportunities for the students, faculties and stakeholders. With the joint Arctic agenda the universities can have their voice better heard in a global context.
Although a large majority of the population in the Nordic countries enjoy a high standard of living, demographic changes will pose a challenge to many local communities and regions. To address rising challenges the universities will by pooling their research capacities create solutions for instance in e-health and telemedicine, social work, care services for the elderly. They will also develop further key industrial and economic strengths in the Scandinavian Arctic; safe, and renewable energy, and extractive industries that operate in accordance with the highest environmental standards.
In education, the four universities will work together to develop new joint study programs based on courses and education resources from two or more of our universities.
“The study programs will be established in areas that are of common interest to our universities, and where we have unique competencies. Students participating in these joint programs and exchanges will benefit from the expertise provided by each of the universities involved, and graduate with international experience, skills and know-how suited for Arctic needs”, says Jouko Niinimäki, Rector of the University of Oulu.
Within the framework of the Joint Arctic Agenda, the universities build an ‘Arctic Corridor’ to even better match innovations with businesses. All four universities have technology transfer offices, entrepreneurship hubs, business incubators and design centres that are instrumental in bridging the gap between innovative research and the marketplace. Exchanging information on best practices will help all these units build competence, and increase their success rate.
The universities will promote the common agenda also to other relevant stakeholders - be they policy makers, business actors, or the general public. Already established arenas and networks, such as the University of the Arctic, will be prioritised. The universities will also work together with the cities of Luleå, Oulu, Rovaniemi and Tromsø supporting their collaboration initiatives.
The Joint Arctic Agenda was signed by (from the left) Kenneth Ruud, Vice-Rector (UiT The Arctic University of Norway), Mauri Ylä-Kotola, Rector (University of Lapland), Johan Sterte, Vice-Chancellor (Luleå University of Technology) and Jouko Niinimäki, Rector (University of Oulu). Photo: Juha Sarkkinen
Last updated: 13.9.2016